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Segovia, Spain
May 7, 2008
Pete's Pics > Segovia, Spain
 
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The aqueduct bridge is one of the most significant and best-preserved Roman monuments on the Iberian Peninsula. It was built during the end of the 1st century and the beginning of the 2nd century


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The aqueduct carries water from a spring more than 10 miles outside of town. Just outside of the old town on the hill to the right the water channel is about 100 feet tall and the entire structure is built of dry (no mortar) granite blocks


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There is a total of 167 arches in this section of the aqueduct which was used to supply water to the city until recently. The water channel is about 2 feet wide by 18 inches deep


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The aqueduct terminal at the high point of the old city


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Iglesia Del Salvador, one of numerous parish churches we passed on our way through the "newer" part of Segovia toward the old town


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This was the first time we had seen storks nesting atop buildings, especially church towers. These were a sign of things to come


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The water fountain outside of the church being put to good use. Typically, the catch bowl at the bottom retains enough water for dogs to drink from. Where is the FDA when you need them...


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Neighborhood houses around Plaza Del Salvador. This area is not part of the World Heritage Site and shows life more as it is


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A little further into town is the Iglesia De San Justo, another parish church


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The courtyard and entry of San Justo. Note the elegant Publix shopping bag dangling from Marian's handlebars


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The area just south of the old town, where the aqueduct is at its full height, is being massively rebuilt/renovated. There is a large square on the other side of the arches


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View into the square through the aqueduct


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A corner of the square between showers. Most of the retail activity in this area is tourist oriented


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Up the hill into old town, the first church we encountered was Iglesia de San Sebastian in the Plaza de San Sebastian


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Next up, Iglesia de San Nicolas


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San Nicolas was in a little upscale enclave of well maintained homes


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A hundred yards away however, things got back to normal. Amazingly, this is NOT a cul-de-sac - the opening at the end of the street on the left is actually a road although it is restricted to one way traffic as witnessed by the No Entry sign on the wall


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At this point the church industry appears to have reached saturation. 120 yards from San Nicolas and eighty yards from the next church along are these two churches right across the street from each other. My bike was so exhausted at the thought of this that it simply fell down


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First up, on the left of the previous picture, is the Iglesia de Santo Domingo in the Plaze de Trinidad


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Its competitor across the street on Calle de Trinidad is the Iglesia de la Santisima Trinidad


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Another 100 yard trudge and we came across Iglesia de San Quirce crammed into the Plazuela de los Capuchinos


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An architectural oddity, the rear of San Quirce sports thes curved walls. Not a whole lot of parking space here


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The road across the back of San Quirce runs down out of the old town and looked like really frightening cycling which we forwent


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Iglesia de San Esteban in the Plaza de San Esteban. From the 13th century, the most important part of the building is the tower, which has been called "The Queen of the Bizantine towers"


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The arched atrium is apparently a common feature in Segovian churches


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From the Plaza de San Esteban, the top of the cathedral tower can be seen as it can from many points a round the city


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Continuing our trip to the Alcazar we passed the Capillo de San Juan de Dios, a chapel centered on hospital and related services


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The next attraction to loom up was the Iglesia de San Andres in the Plaza de la Merced


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From this plaza there is a partial view of the cathedral and tower


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Onward to the Alcazar! A shakeup for internal organs was the order of the day as we sped down this cobbled street from San Andres church


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And, Lo! The Alcazar turned out to be a Fairy Castle. Originally built as a fortress by the Arabs, the building has morphed through a royal palace, a state prison, a Royal Artillery College and a military academy


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Built over earlier Roman fortifications in the 12th century, the far end of the castle is shaped like the bow of a ship. Go figure


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Alfonso VIII and his wife, Eleanor of Plantagenet made this Alcázar their principal residence and, I suspect, kept Rapunzel in one of these towers


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El Captane D. Pedro Valarde was a big wheel in the artillery and now posthumously graces this monument in the park like entrance to the Alcazar


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Outside the city wall to the north, is the Church of the Vera Cruz (Church of the True Cross) begun in 1208 by the Templar Knights. The twelve sided construction is supposedly similar to the Holy Grave, at Jerusalem


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This attractively treed hillside lies on the southside


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Again, the cathedral tower is is clearly visible from the Alcazar gardens. We could wait no more - we struggled back up the cobbled street and headed straight there


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Sadly, none of the Segovia churches were open to visitors except the cathedral and that came with a punitive entry fee and no photography or videos stipulations. Crowded into one end of the Plaza Mayor, the splendidly ornate Virgin Mary cathedral was built around 1525.


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At the far end of the square is the "Juan Bravo Theater" built in 1917. Back in 1532, the Plaza was unexpectedly enlarged when the San Miguel Church, that separated the space into two smaller squares, simply fell down. It was later reconstructed off to one side


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City hall now occupies much of one side of the square


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Opposite city hall is the Hotel Infanta Isabella. The tower of the relocated San Miguel can be seen in the background


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We left the Big Square to the southeast, passing by San Miguel while hoping it would not choose today to fall down again


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Wow! for a 50,000 population city, Segovia seems never ending. From Plaza Mayor it is only a few steps to this next complex square containing all manner of history


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The church on the left of the last picture is the 12th century Iglesia San Martin with the typical Segovia columned atrium


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This ugly great piece of masonry is the defensive Torre de Lozoya from the 14th century. Inside, it is beautified by two Renaissance patios and has been converted into an arts center by the Bank of Segovia


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Between the church and the tower is this statue of Juan Bravo created by the sculptor Aniceto Marinas. The statue is set off by two stone sphinxes with the head and bust of a woman and the body of lionesses


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My trusty handheld oracle, along with numerous signs, encouraged me to visit the Alhondiga so, fool that I am, off I went. The short side trip required passage along this alleyway which is actually a vehicular road. The corner of the building has been cut back at the bottom to permit cars to pass - just


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Yeah! the Alhondiga. This turned out to be the old city granary long since converted into the Municipal Archive and exhibition hall. Not as exciting as the name conjured in my imagination


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We were now on our way back to camp and were outside of the old city. This is the church of San Millan, built in the Spanish-Arabian style in the years 1111 to 1123, having three naves with apses and transept


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The final church we visited was San Clemente, a fine old Romanesque church now deconsecrated. Built in the 13th century, San Clemente has a side portico, an exceptionally wide tower and unusual apse with six windows at the back. Inside are some 13th-century frescoes
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